retail news in context, analysis with attitude

There may be some in the meat industry or political world who are trying to reverse all the negative publicity about Lean Finely Textured Beef, more commonly known as Pink Slime, the inexpensive meat filler made from low-grade trimmings that has come controversial because it was not being labeled on packs of ground beef.

But the question is whether these players will be able to effectively do battle with retailers that are making it clear that they have never had Pink Slime in their beef, or never will from this day forward.

Take, for example, this email that went out from Fairway Markets to its customers over the weekend, and signed by “Fairway Master Butcher Ray Venezia”:

Some USDA scientists recently revealed that they strongly believe Lean Finely Textured Beef (LFTB) -- or “pink slime” as it’s been called by the press -- should not be labeled as meat. According to an ABC News source, 70 percent of all ground beef sold at supermarkets contains LFTB. While that may be the case elsewhere, Fairway Market DOES NOT sell LFTB or “pink slime” – WE’VE NEVER SOLD IT AND NEVER WILL! Since this news broke, we’ve received a lot of inquires about it. But you can shop with ease at all Fairway Market stores, knowing that LFTB or "PINK SLIME" ISN’T IN ANY MEAT WE SELL – and you’ve never ever purchased a product like that at Fairway.
 
ALL of our meat is the highest quality, is USDA certified, is delivered fresh daily, is custom cut by a professional butcher, AND is ground fresh every day and all day. Fairway Market Butcher Shops never cut corners, and the meat that comes into our stores is approved by me, a third-generation butcher. You expect the best, and we have never and would never give you anything less. This is why Fairway is truly LIKE NO OTHER MARKET.

KC's View:
Which is why I keep pointing out that the whole Pink Slime issue is one that has been lost from the PR perspective. It’s over. Done. You gotta know when to hold ‘em, and know when to fold ‘em.